May 10, 2010
Sure, the financial incentives from the Federal government for e-prescribing are indeed a welcome bonus, but over the long haul, the operational benefits you’ll realize will go far beyond the dollars you will accrue from those programs and will result in even more dollars to your practice.
But how do you measure the return on investment? Sure, you and your staff will more efficiently handle phone calls regarding prescriptions. Sure, your staff will not need to pull as many charts for phone calls… but what does that translate to in $$$?!
The MGMA study now concludes that electronic prescribing results in average savings of $75 to $1506 per day per physician!
(Per FTE physician TOTAL PER YEAR savings 336.7 hours and $15,769!)
With electronic medication prescribing implemented in the practice, you’ll have access to a patient’s benefits data, copayments, formulary, and lower cost alternatives. Access to the patient’s medication history ensures that duplications are avoided and drug interactions are captured. The database can provide allergy and food-drug interactions as well as contraindication alerts. Those post-visit phone calls from patients who forgot to request a prescription reissue will be eliminated because the system can identify that patient’s prescription status. Any refill request can be easily routed electronically, eliminating any chance of lost telephone messages and delayed responses.
PLUS E-prescribing is one step toward the EMR/EHR
Electronic medication prescribing implementation is a microcosm of the EMR/EHR implementation. A practice that successfully implements e-prescribing can expand that process and experience to develop the broader EMR/EHR implementation project and significantly increase the chance of success.